The Challenges Canadian Immigrants Face in their Working Family and Health

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When it comes to female immigrants, things are getting worse. According to many researches, the group of immigrants generally doesn’t perform well in the working market of Canada. There is more unemployment among immigrants than among the indigenous, which is especially true among the female immigrants. (Badets and Howatson 1999). According to George and Ramkissoon (1998), in 47 female immigrants from South Asia, most did not continue doing jobs of their experienced areas and were engaged into some other works of comparably low salary.?Martins & Reid, 2007?

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Many female immigrants used to have good jobs and were elites in their own professions, but when they came to Canada, they were having huge difficulties in finding suitable jobs. The biggest contrast between their original roles and their current situation brings them huge pressures, both financially and psychologically. They tend to have a much lower income than male immigrants, let alone the natives, which forces them live economically, and often face the monetary problems. ?Man, 2011?

What’s even worse is that they may often feel gloomy, question themselves, have low self-esteem, and doubt why they immigrate to Canada; some may even suffer from depression, which seriously affect their health.?Man, 2011?For example, Mei and her husband were software engineers in China. After they moved to Canada, Mei could not find suitable job and felt stressful.?Man,2011?“when we arrived here, my husband sought to look for a job in an active manner, and he found a software engineer position.” said Mei, “However, I am still learning English, because I am not sure of my language ability. Occasionally, I doubt the correctness of my decision of coming to Canada.” (Man, 2011, p.204)

Problems are not limited in works, but also emerged in families. What is worth noticing is that the change in the wife’s economic situation can often break the original balance of the family between husband and wife, and bring damages to their marriage.(Man, 2011) Unable to find suitable jobs, many female immigrants can only stay at home, suffering lower self-esteem and feeling sad. At this time, what they most need is their spouses’ understanding and encouragement.?Man, 2011?However, their husbands, meanwhile, also are experiencing tremendous pressures from work, and often ignore their wives’ feelings. What’s worse, some husbands may think their wives not so competent as themselves and treat their partners condescendingly, which further endangers the relationship between husband and wife.?Man, 2011?

When it comes to their husbands, they did no better than their partners. There is a tendency that employers are more willing to hire people with local working experience and Canadian educational backgrounds, which definitely pushed new comers to some unstable works that involve more physical labors and that need working longer without basic welfare and securities. (Man, 2011) This kind of jobs causes huge pressures on employees, who are the only source of income and need to take care their whole family to survive in the new country. (Martins & Reid, 2007)When these husbands returned home, they normally passed their bad feelings to their wives and felt reasonable doing so, because they thought they supported the whole family, which is exactly the same as Luxton’s (2015) study on working class families: the husbands, the only breadwinners of family, claimed their dominance on their spouses, which always leads to the degradation of the relationship between husbands and wives. (Man,2011)Both under tremendous pressures and experiencing failures from work, culture and society, husbands and wives tend to release their rage and attribute their failures to their partners, which posed a big threat to their marriage.(Man, 2011)

The difficulties immigrants are facing extends far beyond jeopardizing the couple’s relationship; they also bring about a new problem—who and how to take care of their children? Some immigrant families have to choose to send their children back to their own countries to be taken care of by the grandparents. Tien shared her story of sending her daughter back to China. (Martins & Reid, 2007) “After the birth of my daughter, we decided to send her back to be taken care of by her grandma in China, because we were not eligible for the subsidized child daycare.” (Man, 2011, p.207) She had to call her mother everyday to keep pace with her daughter’s growth and came back to China every year when she was on holiday. ( Man,2011) Apparently, immigrants have to pay much cost in the finance and the sentiment for this trans-continent kinship. By sending back their children to be taken care of by grandparents, immigrant mothers can work full time jobs and seek to more decent positions in labor market.( Man,2011)

Apart from the predicament in the working place and conflicts and issues in the families, immigrants have to face another plight: their health are under threat and they have difficulty in accessing the health care resources.

According to some literature, when new comers arrived in Canada, they were as healthy as natives, or even healthier than the Canadian born population. Compared to native-born Canadians, immigrants have a lower prevalence of chronic diseases, and lower rate of mortality and morbidity from all causes. (Zanchetta & Poureslami, 2006)

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The Challenges Canadian Immigrants Face in Their Working Family and Health. (2019, Feb 15). Retrieved July 1, 2022 , from
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